How to Select the Right Phlebotomist Training Course near Glendale AZ
Selecting the right phlebotomy technician training near Glendale AZ is an essential first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging undertaking to assess and compare all of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. However it's vital that you do your due diligence to make sure that you get a quality education. In fact, a large number of students start the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We'll talk more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process too. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you select the right one for you. But before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online schools.
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Phlebotomist Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their main duty, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to check that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient's data. Afterward, paperwork has to be correctly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Glendale AZ labs and are responsible for making certain that samples are analyzed correctly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they may be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The most basic response is wherever patients are treated. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, including Glendale AZ hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a particular type of patient. For instance, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would solely be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Training, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially two types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to complete and offers a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they typically require 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a 4 year program provide a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. While not required in most states, a number of Glendale AZ employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. A few of the primary certifying agencies include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are several states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, including Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a premium education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomist Online Schools
To begin with, let's resolve one potential misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial component of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical component of the training may be accessed online, it could be a more convenient option for many Glendale AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online classes are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some expenses, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be minimized also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist program you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a quality education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the ideal choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is significant if you will be commuting from Glendale AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. All of these decisions are an important component of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about all of the colleges you are reviewing before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's very important to choose a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you choose should be accredited by a reputable national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several advantages to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the Glendale AZ job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are reviewing. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can research internet school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even check with some Glendale AZ hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a final thought, you can contact the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Enough Training Included? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with area healthcare facilities. They are the ideal way to get hands-on clinical training frequently not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Glendale AZ medical community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Landing your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Glendale AZ health care community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's important to confirm that the ultimate college you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while going to college. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Glendale AZ, make certain they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Choose the Right Phlebotomy Training near Glendale Arizona
Making sure that you enroll in the right phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomist training programs can be available in a number of academic institutions, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options may vary somewhat across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must diligently research and compare each program before making your final decision. By addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the best phlebotomy college for you. And with the appropriate training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Glendale AZ.